Festival Queen launches oral healthcare project

Dr Dominique Reid, Jamaica Festival Queen 2021 Dr Dominique Reid, Jamaica Festival Queen 2021

Kingston, 14 October 2021 (JIS) - Miss Jamaica Festival Queen 2021, Dr. Dominique Reid, is undertaking a project designed to enhance oral healthcare and hygiene amongst youngsters.

This is in keeping with one stipulation of the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission that contestants of the Festival Queen Competition engage in activities focused on community development.

Dubbed, ‘Project Healthy Smiles Jamaica’, the project, which was launched today (October 14) via Zoom and YouTube platforms, is geared towards providing free preventative dental care for 590 children across the island to mark Jamaica’s 59th year of Independence. It will be carried out during the Festival Queen’s reign.

Speaking at the virtual ceremony, Dr. Reid, who works in the health sector, said that she is passionate about improving oral health in Jamaica.

“It is only fitting that I use this opportunity to make a difference in Jamaica, one tooth, one child, one smile at a time,” she said.

Giving an overview of the project, she said it will be undertaken in two phases, with phase one involving school tours, which will focus on dental education sessions via Zoom, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information.

“I will be targeting primary schools right across the island and we will have demonstrations, prizes and surprises and giveaways for the children, and I’ll be teaching children oral hygiene in a fun and creative way,” she added.

She said that the second phase will include free preventative care in the form of dental examinations by health teams and fluoride treatments to 15 children in each parish.

“Five hundred and ninety children across Jamaica will get free preventative dental care for the 59th year of Independence. This will be done in the order of the regions,” Dr. Reid explained, noting that the project will begin in Manchester this month.

LASCO Financial Services Marketing Manager, Danielle Harris-Drysdale, said that Project Healthy Smiles Jamaica will impact lives by encouraging a healthy lifestyle among young Jamaicans.

“Though we have been forced to keep our physical distance, this initiative has brought us together for a great national significance, which will enhance the lives of Jamaica’ s greatest assets, our children,” she said.

She added that LASCO Financial Services Ltd., a major sponsor of the Festival Queen Competition and Project Healthy Smiles Jamaica, “is delighted to be associated with the JCDC Festival Queen Competition and National Project for another year”.


Minister's charge

I remain hopeful because of the giftedness of the Jamaican people; their warmth and creativity; their dynamism and indomitable spirit that have resulted in excellence in all sectors.

It is by tapping into the gifts and awakening the spirit of the Jamaican people that we will, by God’s grace, re-group, re-engineer and re-open to a brighter future with Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport.

Olivia Grange


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